Keeper Bosnich gets nine-month ban

LONDON: Australian goalkeeper Mark Bosnich was given a nine-month suspension by the Football Association (FA) yesterday after testing positive for cocaine. 

The ban, which applies to “all football activities”, runs from Dec 23, 2002 when Bosnich was initially suspended by the FA after being charged with improper conduct and testing positive for a banned substance. 

The FA will also ask FIFA to make the ban worldwide, an FA spokesman said. 

“Both charges brought against Mark Bosnich were found to be proven in relation to a positive test for cocaine last year,” the FA said in a statement. 

English football’s ruling body announced their punishment after a two-day disciplinary hearing.  

Bosnich avoided a maximum two-year ban and has not been fined, but must pay costs of up to £10,000. 

He has 14 days to appeal against the verdict. 

The 31-year-old former Australia international was sacked by his Premier League club Chelsea in early January. 

He had been suspended from all football activities until the FA heard his case. 

The FA said yesterday that if Bosnich played for an English club again after serving his ban, he would “be subject to target testing for two years under the jurisdiction of the FA’s drug testing programme”. 

The Australian has separately lodged an appeal against a Premier League ruling that upheld Chelsea’s decision to dismiss him. 

Bosnich joined Chelsea in 2001 on a free transfer from Manchester United but made only seven appearances for the London club before his dismissal. – Reuters 

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